Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center

Coastal Ecosystem Science

Maintaining healthy and sustainable coastal and marine ecosystems relies on scientific understanding of how these areas function across landscape scales. Ecosystem-scale science addresses understanding important linkages between watersheds, estuaries, wetlands and offshore ocean regions. Human activities can impact or degrade the health and productivity of these resources by fragmenting habitats, altering drainage or circulation patterns, and introducing contaminants. USGS brings together multidisciplinary expertise focused on developing tools and models to improve understanding of how healthy ecosystems function as well as how they respond to environmental changes and human impacts including regional ecosystem restoration. Research studies address coral reef, coastal wetland, benthic habitat and groundwater resources.

Filter Total Items: 26
Date published: September 16, 2021
Status: Active

Using Video Imagery to Study Head of the Meadow Beach

Two video cameras are mounted on a bluff near Head of the Meadow Beach, Cape Cod National Seashore, North Truro, MA. One camera looks alongshore toward the north-northeast, and the second looks directly offshore (northeast). The cameras are part of a U.S. Geological Survey research project to study the beach and nearshore environment shared by beachgoers, shorebirds, seals, and sharks. The...

Date published: August 11, 2021
Status: Active

USGS DUNEX Operations on the Outer Banks

DUring Nearshore Event eXperiment (DUNEX) is a multi-agency, academic, and non-governmental organization (NGO) collaborative community experiment designed to study nearshore coastal processes during storm events. The experiment began in 2019 and is scheduled for completion in the fall of 2021. USGS participation in DUNEX will contribute new measurements and models that will increase our...

Date published: August 4, 2021
Status: Completed

Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center 2020 Annual Report

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center in Woods Hole, Massachusetts, is one of three centers serving the mission of the USGS Coastal/Marine Hazards and Resources Program (CMHRP). Since its authorization by Congress in 1962, the CMHRP has served as the primary Federal program for marine geology and physical science research.

Date published: April 21, 2021
Status: Active

WHCMSC Sediment Laboratory

The Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center (WHCMSC) Sediment Analysis Laboratory is a Center-wide resource that performs analyses relating to grain size, mineralogy, composition, and sedimentary character of samples collected by WHCMSC researchers and their partners using state of the art techniques and analytical equipment.

Date published: March 22, 2021
Status: Active

Massachusetts Integrated Coastal Studies (MICS)

Coastal erosion, intense storm events and sea-level rise pose threats to coastal communities and infrastructure. Managers and scientists often lack the high-resolution data needed to improve estimates of sediment abundance and movement, shoreline change, and seabed characteristics that influence coastal vulnerability. To address these and other needs the U.S. Geological Survey, in partnership...

Date published: August 27, 2020
Status: Active

COAWST: A Coupled-Ocean-Atmosphere-Wave-Sediment Transport Modeling System

Understanding the processes responsible for coastal change is important for managing both our natural and economic coastal resources. Storms are one of the primary driving forces causing coastal change from a coupling of wave- and wind-driven flows. To better understand storm impacts and their effects on our coastlines, there is an international need to better predict storm paths and...

Date published: August 11, 2020
Status: Active

Samples Repository

Since 2002, the Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center’s Samples Repository (WHCMSC) has been supporting research by providing secure storage for geological, biological, and geochemical samples; maintaining organization and an active inventory of these sample collections; as well as by providing access to these collections for study and reuse.

Date published: July 11, 2019
Status: Active

Sea-Level Rise Hazards and Decision Support

The Sea-Level Rise Hazards and Decision-Support project assesses present and future coastal vulnerability to provide actionable information for management of our Nation’s coasts.  Through multidisciplinary research and collaborative partnerships with decision-makers, physical, biological, and social factors that describe landscape and habitat changes are incorporated in a...

Date published: April 26, 2019
Status: Active

Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center in the Field

In the Field; Land, Sea, and Air

Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center scientists and staff study coastal and ocean resources and processes from the land, sea, and air, to shorelines and estuaries to the continental shelf, deep sea, lake floor, river bottoms and shallow subsurfaces environments.

 We have implemented new safety and fieldwork processes to...

Date published: April 2, 2019
Status: Active

Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center Employment Opportunities

Join the Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center team! 

The Center is part of the USGS Coastal/Marine Hazards and Resources Program, which is the primary federal marine geology and physical science research program. The Center's staff of 100 provides scientific information that contributes to decisions by other federal agencies, state and local entities, private...

Contacts: Janet Paquette
Date published: February 1, 2019
Status: Active

Estuarine Processes, Hazards, and Ecosystems

Estuarine processes, hazards, and ecosystems describes several interdisciplinary projects that aim to quantify and understand estuarine processes through observations and numerical modeling. Both the spatial and temporal scales of these mechanisms are important, and therefore require modern instrumentation and state-of-the-art hydrodynamic models. These projects are led from the U.S....

Date published: January 1, 2019
Status: Active

Geologic Mapping of the Massachusetts Seafloor

The U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management (CZM) is conducting geologic mapping of the sea floor to characterize the surface and shallow subsurface geologic framework within the Massachusetts coastal zone. The long-term goal of this mapping effort is to produce high-resolution geologic maps and a Geographic Information System (GIS) that...